In years past, we’ve tried our hand at a column whereby staff were able to discuss physical media in its various forms and any other music-related purchases, and that was Heavy Buys. The column was used sporadically, but we felt that it was time to bring it back for 2021.
Below A Silent Sky is a fantastic example of great desert rock. Hailing from Germany, they add to the ever-increasing number of great bands from western Europe (Stone From the Sky and Hubris. to name just two) who are working in the spaces between post metal, post rock and desert rock. Their March release, A View From Afar, weaves these influences into a heady elixir which moves between heavy hitting chords, spaced out meditations and prolonged sojourns in tremolo-picked leads. The opening track, "The Highest Shrine", contains all that and more; the beating heart of the arrangements, the dynamo behind the vehicle that is Below A Silent Sky is, unsurprisingly, a great groove section. Both the drums and the bass are groovy as all hell, adding a certain slickness to the fuzzed out chords and poignant guitar leads.
A formula for making Stone From the Sky: put your hand on the dial that says "Camel" and then slow it way down. OK, you went too far and now you've made Earth. Bring it back up a notch, just a little bit. Wait, whoa, you went too far and now we have Cambrian Explosion. Slow it down again just a tiny bit and there we go! Stone From the Sky are like stoner rock that's passed out in a field of post rock poppies, intoxicating delays doing some very weird things to its perceptions of timing, tone, and delivery. Their album, aptly named Fuck the Sun, is all rolling hills and wide meadows, a sojourn in the diffused light of some other source of illumination.
For those who missed our last installment, We post biweekly updates covering what the staff at Heavy Blog have been spinning. Given the amount of time we spend on the site telling you about music that does not fall neatly into the confines of conventional “metal,” it should come as no surprise that many of us on staff have pretty eclectic tastes that range far outside of metal and heavy things. We can’t post about all of them at length here, but we can at least let you know what we’re actually listening to. For those that would like to participate as well (and please do) can drop a 3X3 in the comments, which can be made with tapmusic.net through your last.fm account, or create it manually with topsters.net. Also, consider these posts open threads to talk about pretty much anything music-related. We love hearing all of your thoughts on this stuff and love being able to nerd out along with all of you.
This year charges on and doesn’t appear to show any signs of slowing down. As we near the six month mark (and our own Top 25 of 2017 So Far), it’s becoming apparent that 2017 hits on broader fronts than 2016 did. While the previous year was an amazing year for some very specific genres, there were others that suffered less than stellar performance. With 2017, there’s very little that’s left untouched, with great releases coming from left and right. The list below is a great example of this; it contains post rock, grindcore, jazz, psychedelic electronics, death metal, stoner and oh so much more. Each of these sub-genres have been producing great releases this year, giving 2017 the illusion of a siege. From us, the nominal besieged, a measure of elasticity is required; we must keep our ears open and listen to new places, places we might have abandoned up until now.